How many of you oldsters remember the Lotus Seven (now the Caterham Seven)? Years ago, I drove one for about five minutes and have never been the same since. Lotus and Colin Chapman pioneered the idea of very lightweight, high-performing sports cars, and the world hasn’t been the same since.
But sports cars have gotten more powerful, a lot heavier, and less efficient at getting somewhere. Like many of us.
Now comes a resurrection of the Lotus/Chapman concept, the TEEWAVE AR1, a car that was designed and built in just nine months. The electric powertrain comes from Mitsubishi’s i-MiEV, producing a mere 63 hp and 133 lb-ft of torque. The car is about the size of an Elise or a Miata and weighs just 1,852 pounds.
Range is claimed to be 114 miles; recharging takes six hours. It is 882 pounds lighter than the Tesla Roadster, but the Roadster is a lot more powerful. The TEEWAVE may be peerless in handling, but 0-62 mph takes 11.4 seconds and cries out for a power boost.